The Fair Sect

One of the rarest genres in 1960s music is the “all-female group”, in which the members played their own instruments, as opposed to a group in which the female members are solely vocalists. New Zealand had two all-female groups, The Chickadees from Christchurch, and the Fair Sect from Auckland.

During their six years together (1965-1971) The Fair Sect released four singles on four separate labels. Their career reflects a lack of continuity, compounded by the pressure of relationships and day jobs clashing with constant gigs and rehearsals.

Yvonne Gray, The Fair Sect.
Mary Bradfield singing with The Fair Sect.
The Fair Sect, 1966. Clockwise from top left: Norma Stacey, Yvonne Gray, Linda Williams, Faye Reid.
The Fair Sect - Never Again (Viscount, 1966)
The Fair Sect Plus One, Hillsborough Hall, 1967.
Mary Bradfield, the Fair Sect.
The Fair Sect - Big Spender (Pye, 1968)
The Fair Sect at Embers.
The Fair Sect in Canada, L to R: June Littin, Kaye Wolfgramm, Gay Aro, Faye Reid.
Fair Sect promotional photo
The Fair Sect at Embers, Nick Villard's club near the corner of O'Connell and Chancery Streets, Auckland. 
The Fair Sect, 1966.
The Fair Sect.
The Fair Sect Plus 1 with Ian McIntosh on drums.
The Fair Sect plus One at Embers, Auckland, 1967.
The Fair Sect original line-up, 1966. From left: Val Tapene, Faye Reid, Norma Stacey, Linda Williams.
The Fair Sect in a promo shot for 'I Love How You Love Me'.
The Fair Sect - Bye, Bye Baby (Zodiac, 1969)
Ian McIntosh, The Fair Sect Plus One.
The Fair Sect at Embers nightclub. From left: Linda Williams, Faye Reid and Mary Bradfield.
The Fair Sect, High Flying Bird promo sheet.
The Fair Sect, 1966. L to R: Yvonne Gray, Linda Williams, Faye Reid, Norma Stacey.
Fair Sect sticker.
The Fair Sect, 1966. Left to right: Faye Reid, Linda Williams (her first gig with Max Merritt's white Fender), Yvonne Gray. 
Linda Williams, The Fair Sect.
The Fair Sect in Mascot Studio.
The Fair Sect in a 1967 promo shot. Yvonne Gray, Linda Williams, Norma Stacey, Faye Reid.
The Fair Sect, Embers.
The Fair Sect.
Norma Stacey, The Fair Sect, 1967.
The Fair Sect Plus One - Mohair Sam (Allied, 1967)
Faye Reid, The Fair Sect.
The Fair Sect: Pat Rewai, Faye Reid, Yvonne Gray, Gay Aro, Linda Williams.
The Fair Sect Plus One at Embers club in Auckland's CBD. 

Norma Stacey - drums, vocals

Val Tapene - bass, vocals

Linda Williams - guitar, vocals

Faye Reid - guitar, bass, vocals

Yvonne Gray - guitar

Ian McIntosh - drums

Pat Rewai - vocals

Gay Aro - drums

Jenny Parkinson - vocals

Mary Bradfield - vocals

June Littin - keyboards

Kaye Wolfgramm - vocals


The Chickadees appear to have been the first all-female New Zealand band to perform in public by a matter of weeks, making their debut in 1965. They never recorded and apart from a few local press mentions seem to have stuck to the confines of suburban Christchurch and a few gigs at the popular Laredo Club. The Chickadees’ singer was Canadian and the group included a haka in its act.

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